Beale Street in Memphis, TN is an almost 2 mile stretch that is known as a significant location in the history of the Blues and Rock and Roll. The street was created in the mid 1800’s with merchants who traded with the ships on the Mississippi river. Many black traveling musicians began performing on the street. In the late 1800’s what now is known as the Orpheum was built and began to solidify Beale Street as the place to be for music in Memphis. By the 1900’s Beale Street began to fill with clubs and restaurants. From the 1920’s to the 1940’s Beale Street thrived seeing artists such as Muddy Waters, Albert King and Louis Armstrong playing in the clubs. During the 60’s and 70’s it saw some tough times, but the diligence of the those who saw importance in its rich history have kept the street rockin’.
Today, as you stroll down Beale street, there is no doubt that it is one of the best places in the world to enjoy blues, jazz and rock and roll music. Music is everywhere from the sounds of street performers to tunes coming from the more than 30 nightclubs in 3 blocks. When you are there you should definitely catch a show at B. B. King’s Blues Club. Why not have some ribs while you are there. Rum Boogies is another one to not miss. You’ll be amazed at their collection of guitars. Mr. Handy’s Blues hall is old and small but you will not be disappointed by the blues of the local artists they have nightly.
If you are someone who hits the sack early, Beale Street might not be the place for you. Most gigs don’t start until after 10 and most places stay open until the early morning hours.
B.B. King’s Blues Club
143 Beale St, Memphis, TN 38103-3713
King’s Palace Cafe
162 Beale St, Memphis, TN 38103-3714
45 Beale St, Memphis, TN 38103-3713
Hampton Inn & Suites Memphis-Beale Street
175 Peabody Pl, Memphis, TN 38103
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Memphis Downtown
185 Union Ave, Memphis, TN 38103
When you’re done on Beale St, head north to NYC to visit the Hotel Chelsea